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5 Ashes heroes who became renowned cricket writers

Yabba
ANALYST
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260   //    22 Dec 2017, 16:59 IST

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Bill Bowes bowling

At a time when a plethora of mid-career autobiographies (mostly ghost-written) hit the market every year, we mustn't forget about the cricketers who really wrote well and, more importantly, didn't require a ghostwriter to do the job for them.

Raymond Robertson-Glasgow and Peter Roebuck were not the greatest cricketers but they were first-class writers. Robertson-Glasgow's pen portraits of cricketers he played with and against are possibly the best short pieces on cricketers.

On the other hand, Roebuck's description of a season in the life of an ordinary county cricketer in 'It Never Rains' makes it among the best books of that genre. However, there were famous and successful cricketers who did write well. Here is a look at five of them:

#5 Bill Bowes

Bill Bowes was an accurate medium pace bowler who played for England on 15 occasions. He was part of the England team in three Ashes series: 1932-33, 1934 and 1938. He was initially not a part of the team for the 1932-33 series and received his invitation only a few days before the team set off for Australia.

In a decade when a lot of runs were made in Ashes Test matches he picked up a lot of wickets for cheap.

Bowes came back for a post-war Test against India but by then he was clearly past his best. He was a very popular cricketer and his benefit in 1947 fetched him a then-record 8000 GBP.

He was a sound judge of the game and, post retirement, did not waste any time in nurturing that skill. He wrote an excellent autobiography in 1949, naming it 'Express Deliveries'.

He also contributed to many of the well-known newspapers in England. A regular contributor for Wisden, he often wrote thought-provoking pieces on his favourite subject, Yorkshire cricket.

He later wrote a book on the 1961 Ashes series and called it 'Aussies and Ashes'. His career as a writer and journalist spanned more than four decades.

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